royalnavy.mod.ukTop Class Employer with Top Class People
Royal NavyRoyal Navy

Raleigh MOD Guard Solo 60 Hour Turbo Cycle Challenge

Ministry of Defence guard, Brian Kilgannon
Brian pictured with POPT Lisa Farthing
Ministry of Defence guard, Brian Kilgannon

Ministry of Defence guard, Brian Kilgannon from HMS Raleigh, will be spending the weekend on a bike as he aims to complete a solo 60 hour turbo cycle challenge for charity.

Starting at midnight on Friday 3 November the former Royal Marine Colour Sergeant will take to the saddle of a static turbo racing bike, situated in the bar of HMS Raleigh’s gym, and supported by his family and friends, will aim to ride non-stop until midday on Monday 6 November.  Brian’s goal is to ride a distance of around 1,200 miles averaging around 30 miles per hour, to raise money for the Vitalise Churchtown Centre.

A member of the Royal Navy and Royal Marine Cycling Association, 53-year-old Brian only took up cycling three years ago. During training for the challenge he has clocked up over 7,600 miles this year either on the road or on a turbo.  He is no stranger to endurance events having previously run many half and full marathons, achieving his personal best of three hours and 30 minute in the last Plymouth full marathon.

Brian, who admits he will draw on his Royal Marine training to complete his goal, said:  “The farthest I’ve done on a bike in one go is 250 miles.  I’ve no problem with 12 hours, but after that I’m in the realms of the unknown.  If I start to struggle I’ll focus on the thought that every time I turn the pedal it’s a step for the youngsters at the Vitalise Churchtown Centre who can’t get out of their wheelchairs.  I will be riding for them.”

So far Brian has raised over £1000 in sponsorship from various fund-raising events and donations from local companies, including Cycle Action in Torpoint, Outpost Cycle Company at Plympton, Cycle Scene on Mutley Plain and Certinis of Saltash. Anyway wishing to make a donation can contact Brian via Plymouth 811221.            

Mick Ryan, fundraiser for the Vitalise Churchtown Centre, said:  “I was at Morrisons in both Plymouth and Bodmin when Brian carried out his training rides and could not believe the speed he averaged over so many hours - 250 miles in 6 hours and fifty one minutes!  Considering he only took up the sport about three years ago, to achieve this standard is incredible.  I’d like to thank Brian’s wife Carol and all other members of his family who assisted in collecting money at the training events and I look forward to seeing everyone at HMS Raleigh next weekend.  On behalf of all the staff, volunteers, guests and carers at Churchtown, I would like to wish Brian the very best of luck with his challenge and to say how much we appreciate his efforts.”

The Vitalise Churchtown Centre, in Lanlivery, provides essential breaks for disabled people and carers.    It has been HMS Raleigh’s adopted charity since 1985.  As well as providing a focus for fund-raising activities, trainee sailors from the establishment make regular visits to the centre to help with general maintenance.